Sorry for neglecting this yesterday, because it’s big news, or at least small news that will make a big impact: The California Supreme Court has agreed to review an appellate court ruling that had lowered the threshold for citizen tax-increase initiatives from two-thirds to a simple majority. That’s just review, not overturn — but since it’ll take months if not years for a new ruling, that means the San Diego Chargers‘ plans for a stadium vote this November are hosed, since there’s no way they’re going to win a two-thirds majority. Why, just check out the headline on chief Chargers stadium cheerleader Kevin Acee’s San Diego Union Tribune column today:
Chargers’ stadium hopes take punch to gut
HOPES GOT GUTS! But do continue, Kevin:
California’s two-thirds requirement for tax hikes is a political Mount Everest. Here, given the current climate of some 60 percent of potential voters being opposed to public funds being used for a stadium, it is more like climbing to the moon on a stairway of pixie dust.
So what happens next? The Chargers owners continue their initiative campaign, no doubt (they’ve already submitted petition signatures), and then they lose in November, and then they decide by January whether to avail themselves of their NFL-granted option to bunk with the Los Angeles Rams in their new Inglewood stadium or stick around in San Diego while waiting out the Supreme Court ruling (and hoping the Oakland Raiders don’t then move to L.A. instead). It’s still entirely possible that team owner Dean Spanos doesn’t care, and has a secret plan to lose in November, say, “Hey, I tried,” and then move to L.A. without getting his existing San Diego fan base to come after him with pitchforks and torches, but we’ll find out in January, I guess.